Talented fashion illustrator Elly Azizian studied business management and economics at NYU before commencing studies at the Fashion Institute of Technology where she became certified in Haute Couture. 
In May 2016, Elly began her fashion illustration company, Fashion Strokes. Since then, her work has been commissioned by brands and fashion houses like Oscar de la Renta, Henri Daussi, Marchesa, and Reem Acra. She has also created custom illustrations for! 

We caught up with the accomplished artist to chat all things fashion, her creative process, and her love of Old Hollywood style icons.

What inspired you to start Fashion Strokes Illustration? 
I’ve always loved to draw. While I was studying at The Fashion Institute of Technology (FIT), a professor recommended I start posting some of my doodles and pictures to social media. That was the rough start of it!

How did you get started as a fashion illustrator?  
It actually all started through ballroom dance. I used to dance competitively and was always enchanted by the costumes. I began making my own costumes and I would jot down future ideas to paper. Later, I began working in dance costuming and studying Haute Couture. Between work and my studies I was drawing all the time! I just really enjoyed it and so I channeled that feeling into fashion illustration and now, into Fashion Strokes.

How did you find your style?

There are certain aesthetics I lean towards and keep constant but I love playing with new mediums and methods to keep my work fresh. I gain a great amount of inspiration from new experiences.

Can you share with us your creative process?
My creative process varies depending on the client and purpose of the drawing, but the goal is always to maintain the spirit of the original design while injecting a dose of my unique illustration style.

How would you describe your work and influences? 
I grew up watching old movies. From Hollywood’s golden era to Film Noir, the balance of elegance, femininity, and glamour has always been inspiring to me.

How do you come up with ideas?
I like to focus on designs and fashions that I can illustrate with a bold color contrast or an interesting play on shape and silhouette. I love working with darker shade papers and calligraphy ink pens, so designs I feel can feature these materials will often become illustrations for Fashion Strokes.

What has been the most surreal moment for you thus far? 
Since embarking on my Fashion Strokes adventure, the whole experience has been quite surreal. To commit to a steady output of art on social media and to have that work recognized by my wonderful followers as well as various industry professionals has been a dream come true.

Describe a typical day in the life of Elly…
My day-to-day always has an element of surprise. My work and clients are constantly shifting, so my schedule is always changing. Most days will end the same way though: with my favorite music playlist, late night sketches, and prepping future ideas.

What are some of your favorite fashion brands and why? 

Looks from Dior and Givenchy of the 1940s and 1950s are so iconic that I frequently review them for inspiration and style cues. I’m also a big fan of Marchesa and Ralph & Russo for their elaborate evening wear. I like Delpozo for innovative and striking ready-to-wear looks. And there is nothing quite like Chanel Haute Couture.

Best fashion tip? 
Incorporate elements of the latest fashion trends into your existing style but don’t be dictated by them.

Favorite fashion magazine?
I’ve really been enjoying British Vogue at the moment.

What is your must-have beauty product? 
Mascara and a tinted lip balm. Super simple basics that I’ll always have on me for a quick touch-up on the go.

Who are your style icons? 

Grace Kelly, 
Katharine Hepburn, Lauren Bacall, Audrey Hepburn. They didn’t just create trends, they influenced how elegance and glamour would be seen for the rest of fashion’s history.

What's the best piece of advice anyone has ever given you?  
Always strive to push beyond any perceived limits.

Favorite Quote? 
“The way she listened was more eloquent than speech.”

What do you like to splurge on? 
Bold and unique statement shoes.

Any hobbies?
I love to go to the theatre - plays, ballets, musicals, concerts…I love it all!



Fast fashion or high fashion?
High Fashion.

Coffee or tea?

Chocolate or chips?

Instagram or Snapchat?

East Coast or West Coast?
East Coast.

Check out Elly's website HERE and follow her on Instagram HERE.


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